While everybody knows NDP leader Adrian Dix is taking on Premier Christy Clark in the upcoming spring election, nobody yet knows the name of the Liberal candidate he will face in his own home riding of Vancouver-Kingsway.
With the election less than five months away, the Liberal Party only has four confirmed candidates from among the city’s 11 different provincial electoral districts after incumbent MLAs such as Mary McNeil (Vancouver-False Creek), former public safety minister and solicitor general Kash Heed (Vancouver-Fraserview) and former finance minister Colin Hansen (Vancouver-Quilchena) announced they will not seek re-election.
According to Wikipedia — which appears to be the only up-to-date website with information about the people hoping to run the province soon — health minister Margaret MacDiarmid (Vancouver-Fairview), social development minister Moira Stillwell (Vancouver-Langara), political newcomer Gabby Kalaw (Vancouver-Kensington) and Clark (Vancouver-Point Grey) are the governing party’s only confirmed candidates for the May 14 general election.
Liberal communications officer Sam Oliphant says the party will be making the announcements in the next few weeks, although specific dates for most have yet to be decided. “In Fraserview, Hastings, Kingsway, Mount Pleasant and the West End, we don’t have any news right now,” he told the Courier.
Oliphant added the nomination contest in the Vancouver-Quilchena riding between former NPA mayoral candidate Susan Anton and doctor/lawyer Andrew Wilkinson is expected to be finalized with a nomination vote Feb. 17, while the Vancouver-False Creek bid between former NPA mayor Sam Sullivan and former MLA Lorne Mayencourt will be decided Feb. 20.
The NDP, meanwhile, have 10 official candidates running, with former union leader George Heyman taking on MacDiarmid, former Vision Vancouver city councillor George Chow going up against Stillwell, incumbent Mable Elmore running against Kalaw and civil rights activist David Eby again taking on the premier. (Eby came in a close second to Clark in a May 2011 byelection for a seat in the legislature after former premier Gordon Campbell stepped down.)
Jenny Kwan (Vancouver-Mount Pleasant) and Spencer Chandra Herbert (Vancouver-West End) are both hoping to keep their seats in Victoria, while digital media producer Matt Toner (Vancouver-False Creek) and writer/businessman Gabriel Yiu (Vancouver-Fraserview) are both hoping to win their first.
Oliphant suggested the NDP is further along in its nomination process because it expected an election to have been called earlier. “To be honest with you, it’s not too abnormal. The NDP were sort of thinking there would be an election in the past fall, so they had a lot of nominations quite early. We started our process in terms of announcing our candidates in July with Moira Stillwell in Langara, but now we are close to 60 candidates nominated or acclaimed. It’s not too far from the finish line.”
The Green Party have confirmed six candidates in Vancouver: Matthew Pedley (Vancouver-Fairview), Daniel Tseghay (Vancouver-False Creek), Brennan Wauters (Vancouver-Hastings), Regan Zhang (Vancouver-Langara), Barinder Hans (Vancouver-Mount Pleasant) and Françoise Raunet (Vancouver-Point Grey). Sal Vetro is running as an independent for the B.C. First party in Vancouver-False Creek.